Ryazantsev to step down from Everton board

Monday, 16 August, 2021 70comments  |  Jump to last
Everton have confirmed that Finance and Commercial Director Sasha Ryazantsev will leave the club's Board of Directors on 31 August.

He will also leave his role as Managing Director of Everton Women.

The move is part of a boardroom reorganisation at the club that recently saw Sarvar Ismailov join the board.

Everton Chief Executive, Denise Barrett-Baxendale, said: "On behalf of the Board of Directors I would like to thank Sasha for his work with us over the last five years.

“During his time with us, Sasha has always acted with integrity, professionalism and commitment.

“His experience proved to be instrumental in arranging various finance and commercial initiatives for the club.

"We all wish him every success as he moves on to his next project."

Ryazantsev said of his imminent departure: “It has been a great honour and privilege to serve on the Board of this special Club and I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Board and Mr Moshiri for their unwavering support.

“I feel proud of what we have been able to achieve on the various projects and wish Everton the success the Club truly deserves in the future.”

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Reader Comments (70)

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Michael McLoughlin
1 Posted 16/08/2021 at 19:10:30
Ryazantsev Is Usmanov s man so I wonder if Usmanov is severing links with the club. Is this the start of something.
Dave Williams
2 Posted 16/08/2021 at 19:19:01
Why would Usmanov sever links after the sponsorship deals and his nephew joining the board?
More likely someone new may be joining?
Ralph Basnett
3 Posted 16/08/2021 at 19:57:26
Where doomed I tell, doomed!!!!!!!
Bill Fairfield
4 Posted 16/08/2021 at 20:01:41
Yes, Dave @2, probably the man himself!
Chris Williams
5 Posted 16/08/2021 at 20:10:59
The latest 2 Directors appointed cover most of Rysantsev’s role already, Finance and Commercial, also Women’s football. Maybe those were pre emptive appointments?
John Raftery
6 Posted 16/08/2021 at 20:18:49
The money’s gone!
Dale Self
7 Posted 16/08/2021 at 20:46:23
I'm finishing up my CV now. Hey Tony, did you get Marcel's number when you chatted him up in Mancester?
Alan Corken
8 Posted 16/08/2021 at 20:47:46
Agreed Dave@2: Sarvar Ismailov, appointed last month, is Usmanov's nephew. That sounds very much more like an entrenchment than a withdrawal.
Chris Corn
9 Posted 16/08/2021 at 20:57:36
Michael at 1. He was appointed in 2016 as Moshiri's representative on the board.
Don Alexander
10 Posted 16/08/2021 at 20:58:43
Well at least we still have Lil' Miss Dynamite and Teary Mr Brainfart to rely on.
Tony Abrahams
11 Posted 16/08/2021 at 21:01:30
Hopefully to take over from him, Dale, with a bit of luck mate!
Joe McMahon
12 Posted 16/08/2021 at 21:03:29
Don, cheer up dude. Sarvar has a very rich uncle, and that may be to our benefit.
Pete Gunby
14 Posted 16/08/2021 at 21:34:24
Gives us the inside track to players like Bilyletmedownenough.
John Otway
15 Posted 16/08/2021 at 21:37:23
Is he carrying the can for us falling foul of the Premier League's FFP regulations?
Nicholas Ryan
16 Posted 16/08/2021 at 21:59:50
Ryasantsev was Moshiri's man, the new guy is Usmanov's man.... read in to that, what you will!
Derek Knox
17 Posted 16/08/2021 at 22:00:10
John, don't know about that, but somebody should be responsible for the Financial Fiasco and the Blatant Buffoonery that has seen us blow a King's Ransom and end up with what we have.
Anton Walsh
18 Posted 16/08/2021 at 22:04:04
Playing DCI Burnside was always his preferred role.
Paul Birmingham
19 Posted 16/08/2021 at 22:09:22
Hopefully, this is a consolidation of the Uzbeks influence into Everton FC, in view of Bramley-Moore Dock and the situation general, at the club.

But that's only my view, and is my gut instinct but, with Everton, we know nothing is ever easy nor simple.

Hugh Jenkins
20 Posted 16/08/2021 at 22:13:46
Ian (13),

According to the press, Arsenal are speaking to every team in the world about somebody, but the reality seems to be that, with Kronke in charge, their "warchest" amounts to about £50 (yes, fifty pounds).

They are not a serious option to sign anybody, but like to huff and puff as though they are still contenders. Tomorrow, they will again be challenging Chelsea for Lukaku's signature and vying with Man City for Kane.


Terry White
21 Posted 16/08/2021 at 22:16:46
Another classy post, Mr. Alexander (#10) in your inimitable style. Followed by one of your acolytes, Mr. Knox (#17). You just can't stop yourself, can you?
Clive Rogers
22 Posted 16/08/2021 at 22:31:33
Hugh, @20, are you using anagrams of players names or are City and Arsenal after Moise?
Paul Smith
23 Posted 16/08/2021 at 22:34:52
Funny as there’s no concrete news on stadium financing yet - the main part anyway.
Barry Hesketh
24 Posted 16/08/2021 at 23:02:17
Just over a month ago, Lyndon reported the following:

Everton have confirmed the appointment of Sarvar Ismailov and Grant Ingles to its Board of Directors.

Ismailov, 26 and the nephew of Uzbek billionaire Alisher Usmanov, joined Everton two years ago as Global Commercial Consultant before becoming the first Sporting and Commercial Director of Everton Women and a member of the Everton Women Strategic Leadership Team in 2020.

He will retain those roles as well as his position on the club's Stadium Board but will now join Everton's Commercial and Finance Director, Sasha Ryazantsev, as owner Farhad Moshiri's representative on the Board.

Since then Everton has taken ownership of the new stadium site and work has begun on constructing it.

Perhaps, Sasha Ryazantsev has done what was asked of him and he has decided to look for new employment elsewhere. It could also signal that Usmanov's interests haven't been looked after and Sasha has paid the price, for the financial situation that the club has found itself in this summer. Who knows what goes on in any boardroom at any club.

Whatever the truth of the matter, it would have been far more concerning had Sarvar Ismailov not taken a seat on the board last month.

Jay Harris
25 Posted 17/08/2021 at 00:33:32
I'm with Nicholas #16.

Someone is paying the price for a lack of creative accounting which got us into this Financial Fair Play fiasco.

Derek Thomas
26 Posted 17/08/2021 at 01:20:19
House Usmanov moves a seat nearer to the iron throne...
Don Alexander
27 Posted 17/08/2021 at 02:09:05
Terry, again re your presumably acerbic points on various past posts (#21), Derek Knox and I have never corresponded to each other on anything, but, mysteriously to some perhaps, we seem to be of similar opinion, with plenty of others of course, on the woeful performance of "our" (regrettably) Bill.

It's my opinion that, ever since he took the club, he's been increasingly exposed as the muppet I've always thought him to be, and in my opinion, he's been allowed to stay in post for 30 years too long, to the immense cost of the club and us fans.

If you want a glimpse of his ineptitude and manipulation-in-favour-of-himself that has marked his tenure, you should maybe spend an hour watching (on YouTube) a very insightful documentary very recently broadcast by Al Jazeera entitled "The Men Who Sell Football" - https://youtu.be/ldgTCXpDEgk.

It shows, no surprise, how "knowing" widespread mega-corruption has long since existed in terms of club ownership and how complicit to their own benefit, and to hell with the fans, weak, selfish, bullshitting owners have repeatedly been. Kenwright, way back in 2004, features in it.

But hey, to some of us, all that still matters is his endless promise that he really "gets" (seriously unsuccessful) Everton, and that's all that matters it seems.

Jack Convery
28 Posted 17/08/2021 at 03:07:17
Is he swimming with the Mersey goldfish?
Laurie Hartley
29 Posted 17/08/2021 at 04:11:44
Don #27,

Perhaps you can take some comfort in the fact that almost certainly Bill Kenwright is not responsible for the appointment of Ismailov a month ago and the subsequent departure of Ryazantsev which, I have to say, surprised me.

I also doubt he had much, if any, say in the appointment of Benitez.

Whether we like him or not, it seems to me that our chairman's influence is diminishing quite rapidly and that a new culture is emerging off the pitch.

For me, the commencement of work at Bramley-Moore Dock is a sure sign that those who “own” Everton Football Club are absolutely determined to get the club into the elite of the Premier League – and Europe.

Like many on the site, I am certain that the Number One priority of those who appointed Rafa Benitez was to secure our Premier League status and saw him as the best bet. Going by what we saw on Saturday, they will probably feel vindicated.

Time, as always, will tell... but I for one hope they are vindicated. If he does alright this season, he will have a good transfer kitty next window.

Derek Knox
30 Posted 17/08/2021 at 06:26:43
Terry @21,

I fail to see how you come to the conclusion that I am Don Alexander's 'acolyte'! As far as I am aware, Don and definitely myself are in our seventies and have avidly followed Everton for over 60 years, and furthermore have seen how things have unfolded. I don't always agree with Don either (if you had cared to scrutinise past posts), but neither does that mean what he posts has no significance or is prevarication or a distortion of facts.

Everyone is entitled to an opinion, as you are to yours. It may not always coincide with what others think, but it doesn't mean either to say they are wrong, but I fear on this occasion you are jumping to the wrong conclusion. I take it then by your inference, that you think Bill Kenwright is whiter than white, and Denise Barrett-Baxendale is more than a PR Vehicle, albeit allegedly a successful one (?).

You must also deem that our 'Moshiri Windfall' has been spent wisely! I will gladly read where you can provide proof of that. Don and I (who I don't know personally, or have ever corresponded with apart from on TW) however are not afraid to voice our opinions, and are not 'yes men' who just go along with the flow, and I personally will continue to do so.

I also try to be as factual as I am aware at the time, but also always try to inject a bit of humour into my posts, to lighten the tone. If that has offended you, I apologise, but then so be it.

Colin Glassar
31 Posted 17/08/2021 at 06:40:20
Poor old Sasha, destined for a Siberian salt mine. Better than a bullet in the back of the head I suppose.
Alan J Thompson
32 Posted 17/08/2021 at 06:42:45
Obviously this is part of the defence of the club's position re FFP/EPL P&L, the man responsible has been removed, in order that the share price won't be affected so Mr Moshiri can void Bill's 10 year Chairman agreement when he "sells" his shares to a third party.

Is this true? It could be but as I've just made it up it probably isn't, but it could be.

Tony Everan
33 Posted 17/08/2021 at 08:10:13
It looks likely that Sarvar Ismailov is going to get more more power and influence within the boardroom over time. Maybe it was even at Ismailov’s request / advice to his uncle that this change has happened. More likely it was planned ahead. Who know’s ? it’s all speculation, but I would say that Usmanov is strengthening his grip, not relinquishing it.
Hugh Jenkins
34 Posted 17/08/2021 at 08:43:29
Clive (22) - LOL - Of course it was Kane I meant. Sometimes a typo can take on a significance far greater than ususal. To my knowledge, Arteta and Arsenal are not after Moise, other than the fact that, as stated, they are widely reported to be "after", any player currently registered to play football in every league in the world, bar none, and a few that probably aren't.
Clive Rogers
35 Posted 17/08/2021 at 08:50:16
Hugh, thank goodness, I’m poor at anagrams.
Mick Roberts
36 Posted 17/08/2021 at 09:21:50
The problem with the FFP is both Manchester clubs are exempt.
Steve Carse
37 Posted 17/08/2021 at 12:41:24
Hugh (20), Arsenal's name is widely and frequently bandied about the Press (particularly in its online form). It seems the Arsenal Press and Marketing teams are instructed to inundate the media with all sorts of trivia and transfer stories, simply to keep the Arsenal name in the consciousness of the footballing world; not a bad strategy I suppose when the standing of the club is in decline.
Andy Crooks
38 Posted 17/08/2021 at 13:36:26

I guess you have disagreed with Don as much as I have. "Acolyte", that made me smile. Terry and I have a good deal of respect for his views; he patrols the site, hunting out negativity wherever it raises its ugly head. He is also a bit of a sergeant major re spelling and grammar. However, he is a good old-fashioned Blue.

I think, Derek, if Terry knew you, he would realise his post was a bit daft. Also, I haven't the first clue where he gets the notion that Don has issues with Blue Bill.

James Flynn
39 Posted 17/08/2021 at 18:49:15
Wouldn't surprise if old Sash was picked to fall on his sword over our current FFP concerns.

He was brought in by Moshiri to be his money/football man on the board and we all know how the last 5 years have gone re: money/football.

Hugh Jenkins
40 Posted 18/08/2021 at 15:45:45
Steve (37). My thoughts, exactly. It seems an effective strategy though, since, as observed, they seem to be linked with every living footballer that may be eligibel for transfer.
Lev Vellene
41 Posted 19/08/2021 at 00:59:15
No more need for an obvious flunky? Can't think why, but then I seldom have deep thoughts... :)
Don Alexander
42 Posted 19/08/2021 at 01:45:40
Andy (#38), your last sentence made me genuinely smile, and I thank you!

But to me, re Kenwright, it's always been the "can't see the woods for the trees" analogy in terms of reason (singular) for our near thirty-year trophy-less/hopeless demise.

Obviously, but thanks again for your sardonic comment, genuinely!

Michael Kenrick
43 Posted 19/08/2021 at 15:35:57

Your antipathy toward Bill Kenwright is legendary. You say that "he's been allowed to stay in post for 30 years too long, to the immense cost of the club and us fans."

That rather begs the question: Who is it exactly that has allowed him to stay in post?

By answering, you must demonstrate that the 'who' in question (a) had the power to remove him on one or more occasions, and (b) failed to use this power.

Don Alexander
44 Posted 19/08/2021 at 16:35:37
Michael, our city rivals turned on their previous pair of dodgy American owners with such force that they got out of the club rather than take any further financial/personal hits. We fans, on the other hand, have chosen to endure Kenwright for way too long. From memory I can only recall one visible protest against him on matchday, a fly-past banner, and that's it.

But that's so Everton under him isn't it? The club and fans that never cease giving eh, with next to nowt in return?

Derek Wadeson
45 Posted 19/08/2021 at 16:44:39
Don, many a time you have me nodding in agreement with your comments. As regards to Bill Kenwright, I couldn't disagree with you more.
Michael Kenrick
46 Posted 19/08/2021 at 17:20:52

So you expected a fan revolt at some point in that 30-year timespan to dislodge Blue Bill? You do appreciate the historical irony of that, I hope.

It was the anger of fans expressed toward his immediate predecessor, Peter Johnson, and the fear that engendered, which persuaded him to sell up his Everton interest. Turned out there was only one buyer: Blue Bill and Friends.

You could be forgiven for thinking that perhaps the Blue Union would have achieved your objective. This was, after all, their stated aim:

“Our plan is simple; that the board, who have delivered nothing but failure since March 2000 and who are bereft of any tangible ideas to address this problem, are relieved of the responsibility of identifying and selling the club to a new owner who can adequately illustrate the resources and the business acumen to take the club forward”

But Blue Bill finally delivered on his 15-year search in the shape of Farhad Moshiri... and they simply just faded away... leaving you to scream angrily at the four walls. I'll try not to smirk.

Ben King
47 Posted 19/08/2021 at 17:23:48
All this guff about Kenwright: there's another thread saying that James divides opinion… well, not as much as our Bill!!!

There's one side that acknowledges that his worst failing was not being richer than he actually was. However, he provided financial stability when we needed it and kept on a bright manager who threatened to break the Sky 4 cartel. He then brought in someone with real money.

Then the other side that think he's a thriving good-for-nothing that's accepted mediocrity and, far from doing any good for our club, has actually poisoned it. They even blame him for bringing in a billionaire and suspect the shite signings we made were not the fault of Koeman, Silva, Big Sam, Carlo, Walsh or Brands but actually dear old Bill insisting we bring in Sigurdsson for £50M, Bolaise for £30M and Iwobi for £30M and the rest… Kings Dock was all his fault, as was not bringing in Sheik Monsur – and he's definitely got the Arteta money squirreled away.

Then there's the third side that don't know what to believe because, factually, we don't know!!! It's all conjecture and 'what if's and what aboutery...

How can anyone be so sure of themselves in this ‘debate'???

Tony Abrahams
49 Posted 19/08/2021 at 18:16:30
Divide and conquer, Ben.
Dale Self
50 Posted 19/08/2021 at 19:07:10
All I know is that there are two types of people in this world, those who divide people into two groups and those who don't.

I don't! ;)

Brian Harrison
51 Posted 19/08/2021 at 19:13:28
I guess fans not liking owners is pretty much par for the course. Man Utd fans don't like the Glazers; Arsenal fans don't like Kronke; Newcastle fans don't like Ashley. But you know what? There is nothing fans can do about it. Yes, you can protest and sing songs about them but it's impossible to get rid of them.

I do find it strange some Evertonians not offering a word of criticism against our present owners, but prefer to criticize the owner we had 5 years ago. There are many things Kenwright got wrong but he hasn't had the final say for 5 years.

I think in Usmanov and his puppet Moshiri have managed in their time to take this club further away from the top 6 than Kenwright ever did in his time as owner. But, if you read ToffeeWeb, you would believe that Kenwright was still running the show.

Don Alexander
52 Posted 19/08/2021 at 21:20:17
Michael, I don't care whether or not you smirk. You do as I do by speaking as you find and that's fine by me, despite your consistently bemusing denigration of DCL of course (DCL bringing real joy consistently to most of us, unlike Kenwright).

Getting rid of Johnson should by no means have prevented fan fury being vented at his successor for decades long zilch, even of it took the shape of the Union. Hell, we even won the FA Cup with Johnson in charge!

And as to "Blue Bill and his Friends", the Greggs (as they used to be) aside, just who are these faceless folk? And if he's now been rendered as pointless as some suggest just what's the point of him still being chairman?

As others acknowledge, nobody knows verbatim what goes on but everyone should realise that as the longest trophy-less span of time in our 143 year history goes on and on the ONLY common denominator, and as owner/chairman no less, has been Kenwright.

Michael Kenrick
53 Posted 19/08/2021 at 21:36:21

I don't think there was ever enough of a critical mass within the Blue Union to present a truly united front that could have come anywhere close to ruffling Blue Bill's ample plumage.

I'm not sure I would agree with those who claim that he is now powerless, certainly not for the last 5 years, as Brian (#51) states. Bill's personality is such that he is the leader, the controller; no matter how small his share ownership may be, his title of Chairman of the Board still carries significant weight, I suspect.

But as Ben (#47) and others have said, we none of us mere mortals know the truth of it. Which means you, Don, can continue to make simplistic parallels where Bill always comes out as the Bogey Man.

Don Alexander
54 Posted 19/08/2021 at 22:28:55
Michael, an excellent POTUS once said of his office, "The buck stops here!", and he was absolutely right.

If you seek and win the top job you are accountable for failure, end of ...... except at Goodison it seems.

Laurie Hartley
55 Posted 20/08/2021 at 04:22:35
Brian # 51 - that post certainly gave me food for thought.

Don # 52 - “And if he's now been rendered as pointless as some suggest just what's the point of him still being chairman?” That is a fair question to anybody who thinks he is “pointless”.

Perhaps Farhad Moshiri however, feels that he has an important role to play in the transition from what “we were” when he bought us to what he “wants us to be.”

When Chelsea and City got “loaded” success didn’t happen over night.

My view is that the transition is no doubt taking longer than he planned for but our owner(s) is going to press on until he achieves his goal and the chairman will remain in the interim.

Alan J Thompson
56 Posted 20/08/2021 at 05:00:49
Laurie (#55);

Perhaps the Sheiks who went to their second choice, and the Americans who barely got through the due diligence before walking away, didn't think he had an important role to play at any time.

But we can ponder on Bill's words that he was looking for a suitable owner for quite some time and wasn't it Bill who brought in both Johnson and Moshiri? We won't linger on lawn mowers, AGMs, high-interest rate loans or mortgaging every asset the club had.

Laurie Hartley
57 Posted 20/08/2021 at 08:31:59
Alan #56 – fair comment and more food for thought.

Maybe they are made for each other which is really worrying.

I am now going to take our friend the late Harold Mathews's advice which was “don't dwell on things that upset you”.

Danny O’Neill
58 Posted 20/08/2021 at 08:43:50
I've never got overly involved in understanding Everton politics of late and tend to stay out of these debates. I've kind of buried my head in nostalgic sand for decades! So, for what it's worth here goes & I'll hang myself out to dry!!!

As I saw it, we were deeply unhappy with agent Johnson. Kenwright stepped in and most seemed content at the time. Also at a time when it felt no-one wanted to touch us with a barge pole; for a long time. So I don't know what the alternatives were. Did Kenwright play on that to keep hold of his long sought after train set? I don't know. I feel in a similar way to Moyes, he definitely stayed on way too long.

For me, the rot set in way before that. Yes we can point to Heysel, but other clubs overcame that. We failed to build on our success and the platform we had built through complacency way before. It started in resting on our laurels as far back as 1987.

But I don't profess to understand it all like many on here seem to. One thing I do believe and to Michael's point about a united front, is that in any walk of life; business, politics, military & government, you can't just present outrage and protest politics. You have to present a valid alternative that people buy into. Otherwise you're just protesting and get your placards seen on the 6 O'Clock News, but achieve little else.

Right, tin hat on and back to the football, which in my own opinion is what I'm better at!!

Thomas Lennon
59 Posted 20/08/2021 at 10:01:08
I would agree with your memory of the club changing hands, Danny #58, with the additional information that I remember a local TV 'expose' back then that 'revealed' hidden debts of up to £100M, which was why the club was finding it difficult to find a buyer – on top of a huge need to invest in the stadium.

Kenwright played a big part in gradually turning that round while still keeping us (mostly) towards the top half of the table, which is a feat not to be sniffed at. Many lesser clubs have gone down in similar scenarios.

As far back as I can remember (1960s), the club hasn't really had obvious long-term plans to dominate football like Man Utd, Arsenal or Liverpool did. We were built on the more traditional:

(1) Get a new manager;
(2) Buy him a few players;
(3) Wait for him to win something;
(4) When he stops winning, sack & repeat.

No need to build a commercial empire.

This was okay until Liverpool then Arsenal then Man Utd dominated for long periods from the '70s. We were good for 3 years and failed to build on that. Without the income that kind of success brings, we cannot compete.

The only snag with building such empires is when it becomes an obsession to be the best at all costs. The image presented to the fans is not underpinned by income – see Barca now, possibly Real Madrid. Leeds & Portsmouth also come to mind from the past. We have to have an income generator (BMD & USM) in place before pushing on to the very top.

Danny O’Neill
60 Posted 20/08/2021 at 11:50:01
Very good last point, Thomas, and assessment of Everton's approach over the years. Very few create a lasting dynasty and most mortal clubs ride the proverbial football rollercoaster. We've actually faired better than most of our so-called peers in my lifetime when you put it into context and perspective. Aston Villa, Leeds Utd, Manchester City, Chelsea, Newcastle Utd to name a few. Even Manchester Utd have been relegated while I've been alive.

By all accounts, our Red cousins went close to the wire in their pursuit of staying with the elite. Obviously they ulimtately succeeded (for now) but it was a close call. And now you have Real Madrid driving the Super League to generate more money to pay their debts, backed by arch-rivals Barcelona, who have just reported debts of £1.15 billion.

And to your point about generating income. We are way behind. I argued long and hard last season that the fact football came back without fans demonstrated that the top-level clubs no longer rely on matchday revenue and I still think that view holds.

But a recent report showed the gulf in what Everton generate on matchday in comparison to Liverpool, Arsenal, Tottenham and Manchester United. It's stark.

I said elsewhere, that last weekend, I spent around £300 on my trip to watch Everton. They got £49 out of me. It would have been about £55 had the uncompromising lady in the Upper Bullens have given me leeway by serving me a drink 2 minutes after the half-time restart, but it wasn't to be!! But enough of that, I've bleated about that already without sympathy!!

That's where Tottenham are going with their new stadium. Packed with facilities to encourage supporters to spend more time in the ground before and after the match. And those who have been to White Hart Lane will know, the area isn't much different from County Road. It's all about generating more income.

I'm not saying we all need to become Olso day-trippers who spend £100s in the club shop, but we need to entice fans to spend their money on the club if we want to generate income.

This will have to wait for Bramley-Moore Dock now. I'd like to see the Tottenham model with an Everton twist. How about actual bars or concourses named The Wimslow, or The Brick or The Spellow (now The Royal Oak)? And can we have a Goodison Supper Bar?

Michael Kenrick
61 Posted 20/08/2021 at 13:11:19
Just picking up on this from Alan @56: "Wasn't it Bill who brought in both Johnson and Moshiri?"

Blue Bill takes full credit for bringing in Farhad Moshiri. But let's not muddy the waters by adding Agent Johnson to that.

Peter Johnson had pulled off an impressive rescue job at Tranmere Rovers and it seems that the opportunity for taking over Everton FC arose in March 1994, but I'm pretty sketchy on the details of Dr David Marsh and his demise as Chairman, that allowed Johnson to vie for control of the club.

Yes, Bill Kenwright was on the Board of Directors at the time (he had been since 1989). He tried to put together his own consortium to takeover control in 1994 but ended up backing out to avoid a battle with Johnson.

[I may not have this 100% correct and need to beef up our page on Dr David Marsh, if I can find more sources of information on that crucial time.]

Ken Kneale
62 Posted 20/08/2021 at 13:38:35
Michael @61,

Like you, the passage of time and the mind-numbing dreariness and incompetence at Board level since have dulled the recollection so I post in likelihood of further corrections but as I recall, the problems around Phillip Carter and David Marsh were simply that they were stooges in the sad absence of leadership given the incapacity and ultimate death of Sir John Moores.

His complete and utter control of his club meant no person could purchase his controlling shares or make any real decisions around investment but his incapacity through illness meant the club were in full downward drift.

As I recall, many of the Moores family, whilst not football people themselves, would not deal with Bill Kenwright and somehow, Peter Johnson made a more favourable impression on them despite his red history – a decision at least one family member publicly regretted some months later.

You could say that the events of the Euro ban, Sir John's illness from 1986 onwards, the poor quality leadership left at Board level, and the subsequent investors have all meshed to provide the somewhat lesser standing we all suffer now.

Ian Horan
63 Posted 20/08/2021 at 13:57:14
Interesting take on Kenwright mopping up after Peter Johnson!!! For clarity, Johnson passed over to Kenwright a club with a brand new Parkend Stand, solvent trading position, and a recent cup-winning team. Everton's debt spiralled after Bill Kenwright took ownership...

In essence, Johnson did more good and positive developments of Everton and Goodison Park. I recall Johnson was even interested in the redevelopment of Goodison on a stand-by-stand basis. Happy to be corrected if this is not the case.

Danny O’Neill
64 Posted 20/08/2021 at 14:00:04
I still remember that Steve Simonsen transfer though Ian.

Effectively money laundering as he transferred £3M into his other bank account from ours!! Not an insignificant amount at the time.

I had been calling for a new stadium long before then. Used to discuss with my Everton and Liverpool mates way back in the 80s.

We had 2 choices. Move or do a Tottenham / Liverpool. Buy up the local houses and streets around Goodison and more Tottenham like, rotate the stadium by 90 degrees.

I always used to suggest the old airport site out in Speke due to land and transport connections, but that's probably me being bias. I'm thrilled with the Bramley Moore Dock development.

I don't mind admitting, Danny the soldier aged 25 with a son actually wrote to Johnson on the stadium subject. He, or his office took the time to respond, assuring me it was something they knew they needed to do.

My wife maintains I was a child then just as much as she calls me one now when it comes to Everton.

Ian Horan
65 Posted 20/08/2021 at 14:14:47
Danny, I agree on your point on Simonsen, £3M seemed steep but he was the England U21 keeper and had a growing reputation. But you're right, £3M was high at the time, so maybe not as beneficial as I thought. However, the Park End and solvent trading position was a better starting point for Bill Kenwright than Moshiri's.
Danny O’Neill
66 Posted 20/08/2021 at 14:23:02
Yeah, I can't argue that Ian, and really if we look in the bigger context, the leadership of the club has been wanting for decades.

We instinctively tend to judge in the moment, which is natural. Kenwright is rightfully being judged over 20+ years.

Hopefully in 10 years, we will have a better story to tell about Moshiri when we are at Bramley-Moore Dock.

On the stadium though, whilst I acknowledge the Park End stand, it says a lot that all we've really done since the 80s is put a corrugated roof on the Gwladys Street end and built what in reality is a "chippy" stand behind one of the goals. Oh, and we've dressed up the outside of the house.

Compare that to clubs who haven't moved: Villa, Liverpool and Man Utd and look at where their stadiums are today in comparison to 1987. Stagnation on and off the field. Hopefully Mr Moshiri is about to change that.

John McFarlane Snr
67 Posted 20/08/2021 at 14:28:28
Hi Danny [58] like yourself, I tend to steer clear of boardroom politics, and keep focused on what is put before me on the field of play. However, I thought at the time, and still do, that the transfers of Steve Simonsen and Tony Thomas, were conducted more for the benefit of Tranmere Rovers than Everton.
Barry Hesketh
68 Posted 20/08/2021 at 14:44:16
Bill was invited onto the board prior to the game with Millwall in 1989, by the time Sir John Moores had died, members of the Moores family wanted their father's wishes to be honoured, ie, they wanted a director who had 'blue blood' to buy the club.

A battle ensued between Peter Johnson and Bill Kenwright's consortium, with the 'Red Echo' showing its support for the theatre impresario. However, due to Everton's perilous position in the division, Kenwright decided to allow Johnson to proceed with the purchase the night before the 'Wimbledon' match. Lady Grantchester wasn't happy about it but realised that the media coverage of the takeover wasn't good for the club.

There you have it, in skeleton form, at any rate, according to quotes appearing in 'Faith of our Families' by James Corbett.

It was apparent that Everton was no longer the 'Bank of England' club that they once were and hadn't been for a very long time. Reading through the various quotes during that period shows that it wasn't a Bill Kenwright idea to be a community-based club or a place where youngsters could be given a chance to represent the club, it was a legacy that Sir John Moores aspired to and wanted Everton to be.

Unfortunately, the times have changed and, in the multi-billion pound industry that we see today, can those 'old-fashioned' values really create a trophy-winning football team?

Dave Abrahams
69 Posted 20/08/2021 at 14:53:22
Michael (46),

Surely The Blue Union never got the backing of enough Everton fans to carry on with their hope of getting Everton's Board sorted out, the local media mocked them, who was behind that?

I could be wrong on this but didn't Graeme Sharp have a go at them while he was working for Everton? Apologies if I'm wrong about that, what I do know was the Blue Union were mostly dedicated Everton fans who loved the club and wanted better from those who ran it.

But they never got the backing from the fans, the majority of whom, even now, think Kenwright has done well for the club.

Michael Kenrick
70 Posted 20/08/2021 at 15:14:02
Thanks for those details, Barry, I was thinking Mr Corbett might be a good source. As Ken (#62) mentioned, Sir John Moores's massive shareholding in the club could not be sold until his death in September 1993, when it passed to other members of the family, thus perpetuating a state of limbo for the club when their competitors were racing ahead with the new-found wealth of the embryonic Premier League.

Yes, Dave, the treatment of the Blue Union was 'interesting' to say the least. If I recall, the sycophantic adulation of everything Blue Bill did in the eyes of our widely trusted and world-renown local press meant they never stood a chance.

The taking of sides, in that as in the Paul Gregg reverse mortgage case, meant there was no room for any discussion.

Michael Kenrick
71 Posted 20/08/2021 at 15:14:08
The transfer of Steve Simonsen from Tranmere to Everton in 1998 did raise a few eyebrows, not least for the quoted fee of (up to) £3.3M, and the inevitable screams of money-laundering from critics at both clubs.

The truth, however, is somewhat more mundane. The fee breakdown reads like this:

  • Down payment: £500k
  • Payment at end of season: £500k
  • Payment of £1.5M after 150 games for Everton
  • Payment of £500k when he plays for England
  • ... and a £300k valuation for Graham Allen, who went the other way.

Needless to say, he played a lot less than 150 games for Everton... and never played for England. So Everton really paid only £1M for him. But hey, don't let that ruin a good story.

Danny O’Neill
72 Posted 20/08/2021 at 19:26:42
Thanks for the insight, Barry.

Doesn't ruin a good story, Michael, it helps understand and correct perceptions or rumour-based understanding.

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